The launch date for NASA’s Artemis 1 lunar mission continues to be delayed due to disruptions and storms, while the deadline for robust rocket boosters is fast approaching.
Launch of Artemis 1, which will use a Space Launch System (SLS) rocket powered by two boosters to send an uncrewed rocket Orion capsule to the moon – once again postponed, this time until Wednesday (November 16) Due to Tropical Storm Nicole approaching Florida’s Space Coast. Satellite images currently show Nicole originating in the Atlantic Ocean Next to NASA’s Kennedy Space Center (KSC), it produces wind speeds of up to 70 miles per hour (110 km) as it approaches Launch Pad 39B of the center, where the Artemis 1 stack sits and is ready to throw off the storm.
Now that the Artemis 1 month mission has been delayed once again, there are concerns that some of its hardware will expire before launch. For example, several key deadlines are approaching for the mission’s two rugged rocket boosters built by Northrop Grumman. If Artemis isn’t launched by mid-December 1, NASA will need to analyze the boosters to see if they’re still worth launching after their current expiration date.
Related: NASA delays Artemis 1 launch to November 16 due to Tropical Storm Nicole
During a media briefing in November. 3, NASA officials told reporters that several components SLS vehicleBackers are approaching their current expiration date, according to the latest analysis by team members.
Cliff Lanham, senior vehicle operations manager for the Reconnaissance Ground Systems Program at KSC, told reporters the countdown begins as soon as a rocket is stacked. This countdown is currently running for the Artemis 1 vehicle.
“When you stack your first segment on the stern segment, you start a 12-month watch initially,” Lanhan said. “Currently analyzed up to 23 months and expires. One piece expires on the ninth December of this year and the other on 14 December of this year.”
Another degree of environmental exposure ends in December. 15, he added.
Jim Free, associate director of the Reconnaissance Systems Development Mission Directorate at NASA, said that if Artemis 1 is not launched by these dates, the mission team will need to conduct further analysis to determine whether expiration dates on various components of the rocket can be extended. Headquarters in Washington, DC
“Each one has a different revisit history – that’s my term – when we need to go back and redo the analysis and look at the assumptions in the analysis. And it’s really more of a function of how we feel those assumptions are no longer good and boosters fall into that category,” he said. Free in November. 3 media briefings. “I think I’d be doing our team and you a disservice by saying we could go forever, because I don’t think that’s the case. I think we look at the analysis with a different set of lenses each time, wondering what else might have changed.”
NASA is currently monitoring a two-hour window for Artemis 1 to open at 01:04 EST (0604 GMT) on Wednesday, November 16. If successful, the launch is an uncrewed Orion capsule to lunar orbit and back. The launch will be the first mission of the Artemis program, which will eventually see humans return to the Moon. moon south area In 2025 or 2026, the ultimate goal is to establish a permanent base on the Moon.
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